GLOBAL BILLET WRAP: Sentiment improves as US halves import duty against Turkish steel, but prices still weak

The global billet market saw an improvement in sentiment in the Commonwealth of Independent States and the Middle East-North Africa region after the United States reduced its steel import duties against Turkey.

The US lowered its tariffs on steel imports from Turkey to 25% from 50%, effective Friday May 17. This immediately sent import scrap prices up in Turkey as Turkish steel producers resumed their deep-sea scrap purchases at slightly higher prices. Prices in most other global billet markets did not have enough time to react to the news as demand in some outlets remained low. But sentiment, particularly in the CIS, showed signs of brightening. CIS Trading activity in the CIS export market slowed at the end of the week. Participants took a wait-and-see approach, expecting the US' tariff reduction against Turkey to have a positive effect on market sentiment and prices. “[The] Turkey import duty cut is a hot issue,” one trader said, adding that he expects the market to firm in the near term. Said another international trader: “I do not think there will be any sharp rise in prices in the near term. Maybe...


Vlada Novokreshchenova

May 20, 2019

00:01 GMT